Emperor’s Children vs Space Wolves (1,750pts)
Just to prove that I do actually play the games as well as paint the minis, here’s my first battle report for the blog:
On Monday evening I had a great game of 40K against a friend’s Space Wolves. We played 1,750 points which is my biggest game so far I think and I’d even downsized my list from 2,000 as a couple of minis were at a delicate mid-painted stage and I didn’t want to transport them.
We played a Capture and Control mission, whereby we each had an objective and the winner was the force who controlled the most uncontested objectives. I think it was Pitched Battle deployment which is a fairly standard “within 12″ of your table-edge” setup (on a 6’x4′ table anyway). Both objectives were placed in the Western half of the board and this dictated a pretty close-in fight with the Eastern sector largely ignored. The Space Wolves spread out a bit and I opted to set up entirely in the SW corner, though we both had troops in reserves – my deep-striking terminators/obliterators/daemonettes and his damnable drop pods.
My opponent, Lars, went first and his Long Fang (heavy weapon) squad immediately destroyed my Defiler before it got a chance to do anything. Two of his three drop pods smashed down in my deployment zone and Space Wolf grey Hunters (standard marines) began pouring out. A Land Raider also started charging diagonally across from the North to the West flank through a scrapyard of wrecked Imperial Guard tanks.
Over the first couple of turns, things started to swing heavily in my favour. First up I got to try the delightful and infamous lash tactic whereby my Daemon Prince used his psychic power to herd a squad of Grey Hunters into a nice packed bunch allowing the Vindicator to land a heavy strike on them with its demolisher cannon. I had to cackle with insane glee to see that squad all but obliterated in one turn. The other dropped Grey Hunter squad fared little better as, unusually for me, I aggressively charged my noise marines and Lucius the Eternal into them. This worked a treat and over the next few turns whittled them down nicely.
My obliterators then dropped sweetly in mid table and began laying about with their normal wanton destruction – dealing first with a Land Raider and then turning their attention to the third of the Space Wolves drop pods which had subsequently landed near the other two in my deployment zone. My Chaos terminators dropped in right behind the missile launcher armed Long Fangs giving them serious pause for concern.
I had taken a small squad of Death Guard Nurgle marines in a Rhino just to see how they would do (plus I like the idea of painting them up) and I sent them speeding up the West flank. I had two purposes to this, firstly it would be nice to have the hard-to-kill Death Guard sitting on the North objective and secondly I was hoping to draw away and separate my enemy’s forces – which worked quite well.
With the Land Raider destroyed, causing the scrapyard on the West flank to grow, the squad of Wolf Guard inside were forced to spill out and carry on on foot. My aggressive Daemon Prince immediately charged them but they turned out to be ridiculously powerful tooled up close-combat monsters with two special characters – Ragnar Blackmane and another whose name I can’t remember but he had a hammer he could throw about, Thor-style. The Daemon Prince was all but ineffective in the ensuing melee and they made short work of him. After which they turned their attentions northward to intercept my hard-driving Death Guard. Cue a slight gripe with the rules in that melee troops seem to be able to move ridiculous distances – six inches in the movement phase, six more inches in the charge, and then a further d6 inches in consolidation if they annihilate their opponent.
They easily caught and dispatched the charging Rhino and then laid into the seven Nurgle Marines inside. Although Ragnar Blackmane had detached himself from the unit and headed southward to help his beleagured Grey Hunters in the ruins near my South West objective. Ragnar and Lucius The Eternal had a set-to in which the already injured Emperor’s Children went down but wounded Blackmane in return. My final Marine squad jumped out of their rhino near the South West objective and unleashed a torrent of fire at Ragnar and his new squad (he’d been joined by the straggling Grey Hunter survivors). The Aspiring Champion of Slaanesh couldn’t resist using his plasma pistol despite the risks, and, as has happened almost every time I’ve attempted it, the unstable pistol exploded in his hand – destroying him instantly. Doh! It’s about one in twelve chance dammit!
Over by the Long Fangs and Chaos Terminators my small squad of Daemonettes arrived screaming from the warp and tore into the Long Fangs, tearing them limb from limb, before turning their attentions toward the objective.
The game was heading into the late phase by now and I saw an opportunity to nullify the Wolf Guard squad, by driving the seemingly harmless Vindicator into the scrapyard to act as a very effective blockade. The look on my opponents face was priceless as he realised his unit were not going to be able to get anywhere in time. He tried smashing through it with Terminator Thunderhammers but to no avail.
Unfortunately Ragnar and the remaining Grey Hunters had been able to deal with my Chaos Marines and keep them away from my South West objective which he now held uncontensted. I couldn’t win the game, but could I force the draw by holding the North objective?
To my dismay he had a Dreadnought lumbering purposefully across the Northern table edge which would be enough to contest, and frustratingly my remaining Obliterator decided to amble all too slowly up to intercept it (I rolled 1’s in two consecutive movement phases – Gah!) This meant there were covering ruins between it and the dreadnought, which was enough to save the target from the multi-meltas it manifested. My only hope was for the game to finish in turn five before his dread could get there.
Sadly this was not to be, and try as I might there was nothing I could do to stop him contesting the North objective away from me. Another victory to those damnable Space Wolves.
In conclusion I felt I played a better tactical game than I have before, although clearly I didn’t do enough. I think there are things I can do to tweak my list – which is generally a broad one based on the models I like the look of. I know I could change weapon loadouts a bit, ensuring that I have a way to return some hurt in melee. Lars is an experienced Space Wolf player and they do seem like a tough faction to play against. Seemingly whenever they roll five dice I lose 3-5 models, but when I roll five dice he just loses one if any. It’s probably frustration but in my mind it seems that way!
At the end of the day though the game was massive fun. It was close-fought with definite swings in the balance of power, and there were plenty of awesome moments for us to enjoy. Exactly what one wants from a game of 40K.
Apologies for the lack of photos. Lars was taking photos so I may edit in and hyperlink in some from his Flickr account when he uploads them. I’d also like to do a tactical map template at some point to make the battle reports easier to follow.